01/19/11 — City gets approval to pursue funding for park

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City gets approval to pursue funding for park

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on January 19, 2011 1:58 PM

Goldsboro's Parks and Recreation Department moved one step closer to submitting an application for funding that would bring even more amenities to Stoney Creek Park during the City Council's pre-meeting work session Monday evening.

The board unanimously approved the Stoney Creek Master Plan, a vote Parks and Rec director Ruben Wall said would give his Parks and Recreation Trust Fund grant application more clout, and again committed to match up to $150,000 for a project that would bring an amphitheater, restrooms and improved trails to the Ash Street site.

A master plan, he said, must have been adopted within the past five years for the city to be eligible for the grant.

The application -- one Wall told the council should be highly competitive -- is due Jan. 31.

"I'm being told that we've got a strong application," he told the board. "A very strong application."

Thanks to members of the Stoney Creek Park Alliance and local residents, a one-time "eyesore" has been transformed, over the past several years, into a popular venue.

The city has added to the size of the site through a series of land acquisitions, installed climbing rocks and a butterfly garden and created improved trails and a disc golf course since the public rejected a plan that called for, among other things, a large water feature such as a pond.

And should the city be awarded the grant -- Wall said he is confident it will -- even more can be achieved.

"I have to stay that way. I have to go in thinking I'm going to get it -- that no one else is going to outwork me," Wall said months ago when he first asked the council to agree to match more than $100,000 in grant funds. "Why not Goldsboro?"

Other actions taken at Monday's meeting include:

* The council agreed to lower the cost of compost to $4.50 for orders exceeding 2,000 cubic yards, after Public Utilities director Karen Brashear suggested the change would result in more compost sales.

"Are pricing still does not make us competitive for larger jobs," she said. "We are hoping to move some compost ... perhaps for some DOT projects."

* Chief Building Inspector Ed Cianfarra and members of his staff informed the board that the city has been awarded a $250,000 grant to install, among other things, a new chiller at the Police/Fire Complex.

* The council agreed to award Progress-Energy a contract that is not to exceed $15,000 for design of the underground utility system that will accompany the streetscape redesign along Center Street.